Monday, July 21, 2014

UN & World Leaders Willing to Prolong Misery of Gazan Palestinians & Southern Israel #Ceasefire

Last night the UN Security Council issued a tepid call for a ceasefire Gaza. It was a media statement, the weakest expression the UNSC makes, but never the less as Israel's victories in Gaza further threaten Hamas, their propaganda machine will churn out "genocidal" body counts in an effort to increase international pressure on Israel for a ceasefire which eventually it will accede to.

Hamas will salvage just enough from this to claim a great victory, then within a few days the first mortars and Kassam rockets will slam into Israel's southern cities to make the point that Israel failed to rid the region from Hamas. It will then spend the next couple of years diverting aid money into rearming, rebuilding the terror tunnels, importing loner range missiles from Iran and generally preparing for the next round - all at the expense of ordinary Gazan Palestinians. When the rearming is complete, and Hamas feels ready, it will start to increase fire rate into Israel, sparking targeted airstrikes. Eventually, as happened a few days ago, the quantity of attacks from Gaza will reach intolerable levels for Israel, and once again the IDF will enter Gaza, sparking more deaths, claims and counter claims, until the UN again calls a halt. This has happened 3 times already since 2005 and it appears the international community has failed to learn anything from the pattern. 
Worse however is the crime against humanity that the international community, in pushing these ceasefires, becomes a party to: Hamas is a jihadi terror organization, part of exactly the same family (and acting partnership with) Islamic Jihad and the ISIS currently rampaging through Syria and Iraq. Life under their iron rule is a living hell - Hamas cares nothing for the ordinary Palestinians of Gaza- they are just tools and slaves to its genocidal ambitions against the Zionists & western values. Hamas's supreme leader has amassed a fortune - billions of dollars in overseas accounts - all stolen from Gazans; any dissent is crushed ruthlessly; and children are seen as terrorists in training. Hamas has never wavered from its hatred of Israel - it has not one iota of interest in negotiations for a long term peace, nor in the future of the Palestinian people as long as a single Jew remains on "Palestinian soil". It will again place its rockets & weapon stores in civilian areas: next to homes, in schools and mosques, as they have done so many times in the past and once more Israel will have no choice but to engage Hamas in the killing field of Hamas's choosing.

Hamas see the people of Gaza as human shields - if Israel doesn't fire on a terror target, due to presence of civilians  - as so often happens - then that's a win for Hamas. If Israel does fire, and there are civilian casualties, this is a propaganda win for Hamas. If you are a more liberal minded western reader of this blog understand this: They really do think like that - they are TERRORISTS!

So this time, how about the world breaks the cycle that enables Hamas to repeatedly bring violence and destruction on Gaza? Back off, let Israel break Hamas's hold over the area. Then we can talk solutions for improving life there: perhaps the PA can take over, or maybe a foreign mandate can run Gaza temporarily. Instead of terror tunnels aid acan pour in and go where it is intended for! Genuine development can be created in Gaza, people can live there knowing that within a few months there won't be a rocket launcher next to their home, a fair justice system can replace Hamas's summary executions; borders to Egypt and Israel could open for trade creating the opportunities that Hamas destroyed in 2005.

None of this opportunity for long term improvement in Gaza can happen if Israel is yet again stopped from degrading Hamas to the point it cannot maintain its hold over Gaza. Yes there will be causalities in the coming days - although the vast majority of these 'civilians' will turn out on investigation to be Hamas fighters - but without those casualties now, there will be many more in the next round of violence and the one after that, and between those violent outbreaks, 1.8 MILLION Palestinians in Gaza have no hope, no future and no way out & millions of Israeli families will live in fear of rocket attacks.

It is time for the UN council & world leaders to focus on a solution in Gaza that actually helps the people there - forcing a ceasefire that leaves them under Hamas's domination is a crime against humanity, both in Gaza & Israel. Let this be the last round of warfare in Gaza - let it be the end of Hamas and the start of hope. Anything less is a true crime against humanity! 

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Real Palestinians Have Stood Up - Take a Good Look!

You should not judge a country, people, or community based on the actions of tiny minorities or individuals from that community, no matter how heinous, but rather on the reactions of that community to those actions or people.

Earlier this week, Israeli streets were almost empty as people stopped to watch the funeral of the 3 murdered Israeli teenagers - Gilad, Eyal and Naftali. 60,000 people attended the funerals, including the president, prime minister and chief rabbis of Israel, all of whom spoke. Nobody called for revenge, or blood - indeed the mothers of the boys called for calm and peace and remembrance of three young lives. There were incidents of protest by young Israelis in Jerusalem, quickly quashed by police, but on the whole, the event was about grief, sorrow and healing.

There is little doubt that the Palestinian terror group which governs Gaza - Hamas - is up to its necks in this horrific crime against three school boys as PM Netanyahu has said. There is plenty of evidence linking the three prime suspects to the crime, all of whom are associated with Hamas and Hamas has been making regular calls for kidnappings of Israelis since the Gilad Shalit release deal. So whether Hamas actually planned the attack or merely created the environment for it to occur, they are complicit. We must remember that the Palestinian Authority, led by Fatah's Mahmood Abbas, is now "in bed" with Hamas following the unity government deal, implemented just weeks ago, effectively killing any possibility of the peace process finding new life and hope in the near future.

In the wake of the kidnappings, the IDF conducted mass searches for the boys, which uncovered terror networks and infrastructure in the West Bank and involved the re-arrest of Hamas operatives released in the Shalit deal. Israel knew it was walking a tight line between inflaming the Palestinian street and finding the boys, but also knew if the kidnappers had succeeded there'd be three new Shalits. Israel also had to make the point to the Palestinians - being encouraged to commit this crime by Hamas - that such acts cannot be tolerated and would make their lives more difficult and to Hamas, that it would seriously impact their infrastructure and ability to operate in the West Bank.

Now this week we saw another crime - An Arab boy kidnapped and murdered. Unlike the Israeli boys, at the time of writing this blog, we do not  yet has a clear picture of what happened. It may well be a 'revenge killing' by some very evil Israelis, and the boy's family were quick to blame Israel, but there maybe other circumstances other than revenge as there have apparently been several attempted kidnappings by other Arab clans against this family in recent weeks. In any case,  if it turns out that it this poor boy was murdered as a revenge killing, Israel will demonstrate anguish & horror that one of our own could do such evil.

Never the less the Palestinian's have already reacted with violence and vandalism - unlike the Israeli and Jewish world, they haven't held prayer vigils, called for calm or done acts of kindness in the name of this boy. They have rioted. They have burned the Jerusalem light rail near Arab areas - built along that route to bring opportunity to Arab Jerusalem as well as Jewish - they have started fires in woodland and along roadsides, and they have thrown rocks at civilian vehicles and buses - as I write this, the funeral of the murdered boy is taking place and unlike the funerals of Eyal, GIlad and Naftali, there are no calls for peace and calm, but rather for blood, and revenge. The crowd is chanting "Martyr" and while this takes place Arabs are throwing rocks and vandalizing in their neighborhoods of this great city, even on "Temple Mount", home of the Dome of the Rock, their own 3rd holiest place, they are causing desecration.

Don't judge the Palestinians because the three Israelis were murdered, and don't judge Israel because this poor Arab boy was murdered - judge them on their reactions! When this Arab boy turned up dead, the vast majority of Israelis were horrified and saddened that it may have been one of theirs that did it. When the three Israelis were taken and murdered, Palestinian parents and teachers took 100s of photos of their small children holding up three fingers in delight at the act. The people who danced on 9/11 gloried in kidnap and murder. Judge them on that.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Who's To Blame For the New Iraq Crsis?

Yesterday former British Prime Minister Tony Blair sought to distance himself from Iraq's current decent into chaos by placing the blame not on himself & Pres. Bush's decision to invade Iraq & remove Saddam, but instead he placed the blame firmly at President Obama's feet, over his inaction in Syria and his removing US forces from Iraq before the Iraqi army was ready to shoulder the responsibility ( as they showed when at the first sign of trouble, they dropped their weapons and ran). Blair has subsequently received a lot of flack & derision for his comments, but does he have a point?

Where he is correct is that Syria's civil war is superficially where this violence has spread from and  Obama & UN)'s failure to act in Syria has led to what is occurring in Iraq, and could spread further (Lebanon even Jordan). Obama is seen by Arabs and indeed most of the world, with a great deal of justification, as incompetent  in foreign policy & indecisive when it comes to using the massive military force the US can wield. His "Red Line" in Syria was a blatant example of this, preferring to  be railroaded by Putin & Assad rather than take the action he had loudly threatened months before. As any parent knows - you don't issue threats if you don't or can't follow through.  Obama's  incompetence  has created a power vacuum around the world that Putin has certainly exploited in Crimea and so have extremist elements in Syria & that has most certainly spilled over into Iraq.

Tangentially Obama's response to Iraq's plea for help is to basically tell them deal with it themselves, when it is clear they are overwhelmed and cannot. One way that we will all pay for Obama's failure will be by rising oil and gas prices worldwide which will impact on economies only now emerging form recession, including in the US.

Tony Blair is also fundamentally wrong, because he ignores the role of Iran in all of this as does Obama (although Blair is far more astute than Obama) - Iran & Iraq were implacable enemies prior to Saddam's fall. 100,000s had died from the two states during their protracted civil war and they faced each other across their border warily, with a great deal of Iran's military resources focused on that front. Bush & Blair's actions in 2003 removed that threat to Iran - it was like taking the nose ring out of a raging bull. Since then, unfettered from fears of a powerful enemy, they have sough to take control of the Arab world - drastically increasing funding and support to groups such as Hamas & Hezbollah, and deliberately destabilizing
Lebanon, Syria & now Iraq in the process. The scapegoating of Israel is Iran's  rallying call to the Arab street (traditionally wary of the non Arab Persians). Iran are behind the ongoing civil war in Syria as much as Assad & they are quite blatantly manipulating the strife in Iraq. Bush & Blair's advisers should have foreseen this consequence.

However, Bush & Blair have not been world leaders for several years - only a few months ago Obama again displayed his weakness by letting Iran off the hook over its nuclear ambitions. When you consider that Iran is funding many of the Islamist terror groups slaughtering people around the world, then not taking decisive action over their desire for nuclear weapons borders on imbecilic - certainly blatant incompetence. The world placed Iran under heavy sanctions that eventually brought them to the negotiating table - the US & UN held all the cards. Iran was brought to their knees and basically crawled to those negotiations - so how is that a few weeks later that same Iran walked away ... no skipped joyously away, with at best flimsy restrictions which do little to protect Israel or the West? Yes - the West & US are threatened too - Iran has ICBM long range missiles, which it does not need to reach Israel or any other Mid East target - who are these weapons intended for?

At any point, Obama could utilize the power that comes with his office & slow or stop the destabilization & accompanying misery Iran is causing to millions of people. He could remove the threat this rogue nation of war represents. Iran is the fuel feeding the Mid East fires - remove that fuel & the fires will die down. However Obama's US continues to fail to bring its strength to bear on Iran, Putin or in Syria. His failures will cause many more deaths, over many more years,  than Bush's or Blair's ever did.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Palestinian Society has reached its lowest point

How pathetic has the Palestinian world become? How low has it sunk over the past couple of decades? Their  master plan for "resistance" is kidnapping Israeli teenagers! This is how they hope to bring Israel build a future for the Palestinian people... by extorting the release of terrorists on the back of unarmed school kids? They've tried blowing up buses and cafes, they've tried attacking targets around the worked from Entebe to the Olympics and now they are snatching schoolkids!

It may not be the major Palestinian players like Hamas or the PLO behind this particular cowardly and pathetic crime, but Hamas leaders were falling over themselves today to encourage more of these types of crimes. This is the same Hamas who run the government of the independent Palestinian area of Gaza and the same Hamas who last week rejoined the Palestinian Authority, and the same Hamas that the US government agreed to work with. So to be clear the Palestinian Authority, newly unified, includes a 'party'  (in reality an unreformed and unrepentant terror organization backed by Iran) who's officials advocate kidnapping Israelis as bargaining tools. Israel's PM Netanyahu today blamed this new unity government directly for the kidnapping - that is probably a stretch, but if Hamas is publicly cheering this crime then the PA is indeed culpable and the UN, US & EU should take clear note of who it is they are now doing business with, and question exactly to whose pockets their citizens tax money is being given as aid.

The terror crimes of the Palestinian groups has made life much more difficult for Palestinians - in reaction to Arafat's intifada, in reality a wave of suicide bombings of civilian targets, Israel built the hated security fence / wall (which stopped the bombings saving 100s if not 1000s of lives); when Hamas took over Gaza, turning it into a terror base and launching waves of missile attacks on Israel, both Israel & Egypt closed their borders and now if kidnapping Israeli kids & other civilians is the new tactic, one can only imagine the new difficulties the Palestinians will face as Israel defends itself against this threat. Liberals around the world and so called 'pro Palestinians' will within days be bleating on about "collective punishment" and "over reaction", but the job of the Israeli government is first and foremost to protect Israeli citizens not make Palestinian's lives comfortable. Lets be clear - Israel is reacting to a threat - remove the threat & you remove the reaction.

Israel will not and can not allow a new wave of kidnappings to break out,  which means more checkpoints, tighter grips on border crossings in and out of Jordan, Egypt and most especially Gaza - it may mean Israeli forces returning to Palestinian cities to enforce order & break up terror cells. If the Palestinian leaders don't want these consequences, then they must root out the criminals, punish severely the perpetrators and send the message clearly that these terror crimes are a piteous embarrassment to the Palestinian people and not in anyway a victory. 98% of Palestinians live under PA control - the word authority is in the PA's name and they need to exercise some! If they do not and these boys are not found or returned, and worse, if more attempts occur, then Israel must take tough unilateral action: There can be no working with a Palestinian Authority that includes Hamas, no collecting and handing over taxes to such an authority, no security arrangements, no providing power to Gaza, nothing! Indeed the world must say to the Palestinians, that if this is the path they are going to take, then there will be no aid or support - this appeasing of Palestinian leaders incapable of making peace, whilst endorsing violence and terror has to end - not just for Israel, but for the Palestinians, because world support that is propping up these pathetic people in leadership positions, and it is denying the Palestinians a future that real leaders who are prepared to negotiate and compromise could forge for them and it is of course placing Israeli lives at further risk.

There will be  weak fools out out there in the world reading this who will say that I am blaming all Palestinians for the actions of a few - but this is not so because within Palestinian society there is a cancer that hails child killers as heroes, names schools after suicide bombers, calls 9/11  a great victory and produces a curriculum in schools that teach children that Jews are pigs and monkeys. Inside Palestinian Gaza thousands of children are forced to attend Hamas terror schools, training them to be fighters of the future and in all parts of Palestinian society, children are encouraged to be on the front line, throwing rocks, and acting as human shields. The terrorists are in villages and towns, but are not being exposed or rejected, but instead are heroic 'resistance fighters' which in reality damns all of Palestinian society for collectively condoning these scum. Any steps Israel takes will not be 'collective punishment' but defense against a society so corrupt, so low, it believes kidnapping children is heroic.

There is no bright optimistic future for any people that have sunk so low - the future for the Palestinians is not in their grasp and cannot be until ordinary Palestinians turn round and so to their leaders that they don't want to be the people that kidnap kids or blow up buses. Only when the riots and demonstrations are about that will they find leaders who are prepared to enter into hard but genuine negotiations with Israel. Only when they stop seeing their children as rock throwing human shields and Israeli children as legitimate targets, can they sit down with Israel to build a future for their children.

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Questions Nobody Asks of Arab World or Human Rights Activists...

Here's a question nobody asks of those spewing BDS hate accusations of rhetoric of apartheid, genocide & occupation:

How is that in the evil genocidal Zionist regime of Israel, Israeli Arabs are full citizens of a democracy - the sole democracy in the Middle East? These Israeli Arab citizens grandparents chose not to heed the call of their Arab leaders in 1948 to leave the area' temporarily' - today their children and grandchildren are the 1.6 million Israeli Arab population which stand alone out of 330,000,000 Arabs across the Middle East with rights that the Arab Spring sadly failed to grant anyone else.

Meanwhile while Israeli Arabs flourish within Israel society (despite some obvious inequalities both geographic and cultural), their Palestinian cousins live in squalid refugee camps in every Arab state, absurdly & disgracefully denied citizenship of the countries their parents & grandparents were born in. In some places such as Lebanon they are denied higher education - in fact it is illegal for them to even hold or
be trained for 'professional posts'!

When you hear words like apartheid & genocide thrown at Israel, look how the Arab world treats Palestinians & look how Israel treats its Arab citizens. Ask yourself honestly where the racism and apartheid really is manifest in the Middle East. Then ask yourself how, when this is so damnably obvious, the international media doesn't report this ongoing crime against humanity! How are highly educated college professors ignorant and silent on the Arab world's treatment of Palestinians (while they feel able to accuse Israel of apartheid & genocide against all facts or logic)? How are those "human rights" activists who are prepared to sail to Gaza out of love for Palestinians, totally silent in the face of dozens of states abuse of the same people?

Israel shouldn't need to defend against absurd accusations of genocide and racism, especially coming from the very Arab states who have committed those very crimes against Palestinians for the past 70 years. Israel's actions toward its 20% minority population as compared to theirs against their own Palestinians, speaks louder than any words. 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Palestinians deprive their own people of clean water for propaganda...and the world accepts it !

Last week's brouhaha in the Israeli parliament caused by European Parliament President Martin Schulz erroneous claim,  during a guest speech in The Knesset, that Palestinians living in the West Bank are allotted one-fourth of the amount of water that Israelis are allotted is a perfect example of all that is wrong in the world discussions and activism around the Palestinian  / Israeli conflict. I have always said that this is a complicated nuanced situation, which is not helped by the vast amount of misinformation and incitement pouring from the Palestinian side, accepted as truth by a world eager to believe the "under dog". Water is a perfect example:

Schulz was wrong - of that there is no question - and he has  accepted that believing a Palestinian youth he had met that day without checking the information was a mistake but I do not think the Palestinian youth believed he was lying and I would guess that most ordinary Palestinians believe exactly what Schulz's anonymous source had told him, but what is the truth? What are the facts? If we can't get to the reality to a situation, how are we going to be able to find real solutions?

First, lets be clear - Palestinians do not get as much water as Israelis, including those living in Judea / Samaria aka The West bank, but much of this is of their own causing as I will show below: On the positive side Israel has ensured that Palestinian water quality and quantity has improved dramatically since the area came under Israeli control in 1967, and  Palestinians have far better water supplies than the vast majority of people who live in most of the regions Arab nations. Israel is supplying the PA with more than 50 m.c.m. or 25% of its total needs – which, under the  Oslo Accords, is more than Israel is supposed to provide even a full-fledged Palestinian state under a final-status arrangement! 

Part of the problem with Palestinian water comes from the inefficiency and corruption of the Palestinian Authority and in part from the political desire to keep the issue as a weapon to beat at Israel, regardless of the suffering it causes the Palestinian people  - for example the PA has built just one sewage plant over the past 15 years, despite  a $500 million international donor fund available to them to build more. There are plans for building purification plants in several major Palestinian towns such as Hebron, Bethlehem and Nablus, paid for by donor countries, but the Palestinians have decided that they don’t want to build in the Oslo defined Areas A and B under their control, but only in Area C (which is under full Israeli military, and administrative control). Israel has stringent regulations for these and similar projects in other parts of Israel which the Palestinians have no interest in complying with ( and wouldn't have to in areas A & B) so they have built none of these plants. Where Israel has made an effort to help with West bank sewage treatment, such as the Wadi Kana trunk sewage pipe designed collect and recycle waste water from Palestinians and Jewish communities in parts of the disputed territories, the PA has refused to cooperate and hasn't connected the 11 Palestinian towns in the area to this new sewage line, preferring to dump raw sewage in the ground causing totally unnecessary environmental issues in their territory.

So are the Palestinians really short of water as they claim? Certainly they are correct that Israel has finally got enough water for its own purposes, after its world leading desalinization plants & water recycling technology has drastically reduced Israel's dependency on the Sea of Galilee  The Palestinians for their part have the large Eastern aquifer given entirely over for their use by Israel as part of the Oslo accords, which inexplicably they have barely begun to tap into and which should be producing at least another 60 m.c.m. per year. More than half the approved wells have not even been started by the PA, again despite international funding sitting waiting. 

In the meantime, the Palestinian Authority does give its tacit and unsubtle approval of the illegal tapping of pipes into Israel's primary water lines, stealing a massive amount of  water and connecting it directly into the PA water system. In 2012 the IDF discovered hundreds of these illegal connections to the main Mekorot pipeline. Cutting this supply line adds to the impression of Palestinians, reinforced culpably by the Palestinian Authority's propaganda machine (known derisively as Pallywood) that evil Israel is depriving ordinary Palestinians of their water, when in fact a  study by Professor Haim Gvirtzman in 2012 of Hebrew University’s Hydrology Studies Program, showed that 10 million cubic meters of Israel's water is being stolen each  year as a result of this Palestinian state-sanctioned theft ( which they also do not factor into their water statistics they send to international bodies and media.).

We must bear in mind that not only has Israel been meeting its international obligations under the 1995 Oslo accords, but consequently every Israeli pays far more for his or her water because Palestinians receive their water from Israel at a discount price and steal a huge amount more. On top of this  PA often reneges on its commitment to pay for the water it receives legally from Israel, partly to maintain the water filled political football and partly because funds donated (or raised from taxes)  to pay for water has inexplicably disappeared, presumably  into private bank accounts.  

The bottom line - Palestinian Authority has created a water crisis, and it sells this to the world as Israel starving the poor underdog Palestinians  of water - typical of apartheid Zionism. This fits into the Pallywood narrative but at what cost? What it needs is well intentioned leaders such as Martin Schulz to call Abbas on this deception - this would take at least one myth off the table. Again - we need to be talking about the REAL issues and not these Pallywood inventions. World leaders know what is happening even if the rabid boycott haters do not. It is for them to look at the facts, and tell the PA that it just won't wash. Do this with each myth and we'll be talking genuine solutions - finally.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Obama & Kerry's Meddling in Israeli / Palestinian Situation is The Diplomatic Equivalent of Medical Malpractice and here's why....

Imagine a doctor, confronted with a patient suffering from chronic sciatica, a gun shot wound, and a serious concussion, who decided to put all his effort into treating the sciatica. I'm assuming that he would eventually lose his license to practice medicine, after correct prioritizing is the essential basis of triage! 

Now consider President Obama and his Secretary of State John Kerry, surveying the Middle East with a quarter million dead in Syria; Iranian aspirations to rule Mid destabilizes the region, and threatening both Israel & The US; Lebanon teetering on the edge of civil war; Egypt crushing democracy; 330,000,000 Arabs across the Mid East denied basic democratic rights; and women in several countries treated to laws more severe than apartheid S.Africa ever imagined - what problem do they choose to devote their effort and resources? The Palestinian Israel conflict! Yes, like sciatica it is a painful and long term issue, which needs careful treatment and pain management, but in the face of potentially fatal wounds, to focus on Israel / Palestinian issue constitutes nothing short of  incompetence. 

In fact given that any Palestinian solution must involve the entire region for it to have any meaning or hope of success, Kerry's efforts are doomed to failure, where as intervention in Syria could save lives and in Egypt could steer the interim government to develop democratic institutes. A firm hand with Iran could have more positive effect on the region & Palestinians than any protracted fruitless peace talks - simply making it harder for Iran to fund and resupply Hamas and Hezbollah  would achieve that.

It appears that Obama and Kerry are simply trying to look like they are doing something important, to hide their impotence to deal with the wider Mid East issues, which lets be honest, Obama's mishandling from the day he arrived in office has been a major contributing factor. Their incompetent meddling - and lets remind ourselves that if they were doctors and the Region their patient, they'd be fired by their hospital by now - is very likely to lead to a resurgence in violence, even a third intifada. Nobody in Israel or Palestinian society benefits from that, yet Kerry is pushing. Abbas knows he can't make peace now, Hamas knows this too, as does the Israeli government, so what is this about? Its about President Obama and John Kerry's reputations, nothing more and that is - its malpractice!